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  • Battle of the Brains
  • Battle of the Brains

Battle of the Brains

SKU: SG266
    Battle of the Brains is a four-part documentary series suitable for middle years, screened on ABC TV, following the journey of a group of Australian science students, as they prepare to compete at the International Science Olympiads. This is a competition for students under the age of twenty who are not yet at university. It originated in Europe in 1989 and now draws teams from all over the world. Students compete in examinations at a standard equivalent to first year university biology courses in Australia.

    It tells the story of eight Australian teenagers as they work towards competing against the best science scholars in the world but only four will achieve their dream to compete in Beijing. Each summer school holidays, a small group of students spends three grueling weeks at the Australian National University studying advanced science. Ranging from thirteen to seventeen years, these teenagers are amongst the nation's top science students in physics, chemistry and biology. Committed educators and scientists, most of them ex-Olympians, coach these candidates from around Australia as they breathe, eat and sleep science, in a rigorous process dubbed the science 'boot camp'.

    The students are both vulnerable and inspiring. They not only let us in on their journey towards the IBO, but also into their lives, realities, dreams and fears.

    Every day teachers engage with students who have diverse abilities and interests in their classrooms. Each one of these young people is an individual with unique gifts, skills and learning styles. These talents affect the way that each person learns. The guide asks students to analyse the intellectual cognitive and emotional characteristics that a young person may have such imagination, humour, compassion, sensitivity, memory, reasoning, perfectionism and perception. Through the stories of these young Australians the series and the guide challenge students to analyze their own learning styles and strengths and weaknesses and the concept of giftedness.

    The study guide includes discussion starters and activities in Biology: the language of Biology, the ethics of using animals for dissection, the science of genetically modified foods- issues of safety, the use of gene therapies in our society and the ethical or scientific considerations that should be considered to regulate the use of assisted reproductive technologies. For Science the guide provides methodology of investigation and research as well as the history of discoveries in Australia and famous scientists. The Media Studies section focuses on the issues of producing a multiple narrative, multiple episode television series and includes interviews with the directors and producers.

    Curriculum Links:
    Battle of the Brains, the series and study guide provide a valuable resource across several curriculum areas for secondary students, as well an insight into how teenagers learn, for teacher trainees. It is particularly relevant to:
    • Science
    • English
    • Media Studies
    • Social Education

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